Buying advice: Which helmet for my Vespa?

Created by Ralf Jodl at 12:06 on June 2, 2021

You have a Vespa, old or new, and are looking for the perfect helmet for you? Or are you planning to buy a scooter? But even motorcyclists can learn something here ... How do I find the right helmet? Which helmet suits me? How do I know if my helmet fits? You need competent helmet advice! Let's start with some basics about motorbike helmets that are worth knowing:

MATERIAL & Structure

GRP/fibreglass belongs to the group of thermosets and has excellent energy-dissipating properties. The helmet shell consists of several laminated layers, often in combination with carbon, aramid or Kevlar. Helmets made of carbon belong to the high-end models. They impress with a lower weight, a high degree of stability and a service life of around ten years. ABS/Resin is an upgraded polycarbonate. These helmets have a shorter lifespan (less than five years) and cannot be painted. A special feature are the helmets from Shoei, which are characterised by an Advanced Integrated Matrix (AIM). A mixture of different fibreglass and synthetic resin.

A helmet consists of two different layers that work together to provide the necessary protection. The hard outer shell is made of thermoplastic (ABS) or fibre composite plastics (GRP/carbon). It must withstand the impact, distribute the acting forces evenly and cushion peaks. The inner shell made of polystyrene (EPS) functions as a "shock absorber": the kinetic energy of the impact is transformed by material deformation and thus protects the head. The more the inner shell can deform, the more energy is absorbed. Both layers must therefore be perfectly matched to each other. In the research & development departments, helmet manufacturers work on constantly improving the protective properties. The inner lining is made of artificial leather or cotton.

Helmet fasteners

The helmets at SIP Scootershop have either a ratchet, click or double D-ring closure. Racers prefer the double D-ring, as it withstands the most traction and fits perfectly on the chin. The ratchet closure is easy to adjust even when wearing gloves, while the click closure works like a car seatbelt. You should not let the fastener stop you from buying your favourite helmet. You get used to every fastener.

Lifetime of a helmet and the perfect care

The TÜV estimates the useful life of a helmet at five years. Hand on heart, how old is your current motorbike helmet? However, care, storage and of course the kilometres ridden play a major role. Ideally, the helmet surface should be cleaned after every ride. Lukewarm water, neutral soap in combination with a lint-free kitchen cloth should be left on the surface for two to three minutes to prevent insects from drying. Afterwards, the helmet can be wiped with a microfibre cloth. Wax and polishes, on the other hand, are not suitable for helmet cleaning. The inner lining should be removed and washed regularly.

What to do in case of damage and accidents?

Generell sollte es vermieden werden, Helme hart auf den Boden aufprallen zu lassen. Natürlich wird die Aufprallwucht ohne den ca. sechs Kilogramm schweren Kopf vermindert. Aber auch wenn der Helm auf den ersten Blick keinen Schaden genommen hat, können Mikrorisse dafür sorgen, dass nicht mehr die volle Schutzwirkung vorhanden ist. Im Zweifelsfall lieber einen neuen Helm anschaffen. Nach einem Unfall sollte der Helm allerdings auf jeden Fall ausgetauscht werden.

There should be a finger of air between the forehead and the helmet lining.

How do I find the perfect helmet for me?

he best way to measure the circumference of the head is with a tape measure. Place the tape about one centimetre above the eyebrows and then bring it together again at the back of the head. Compare the result with this table and you will know exactly what size helmet you should wear. Wearers of glasses measure the circumference in the same way, but choose the size so that the glasses do not press on the nose.

Other points to consider:

  • The selected helmet should be worn for ten to 15 minutes to check comfort.
  • The helmet should fit tightly and not slip down the neck.
  • The head should have no slack in the helmet, i.e. when you turn the helmet, the head should "go with it".
  • The cheek pads can be a little tighter at the beginning, because they will give way by one or two millimetres over time. The forehead pads, on the other hand, are thinner and do not do this.
  • The straps of the fastener should not press against the neck but against the chin.
  • When the chin strap is closed, the helmet should not fall into the face.

Jet helmet, full-face helmet, flip-up helmet, half-shell, children's helmet?

There is no alternative to a helmet. But helmets are of course also important for the look and often an expression of one's own personal style: helmets, visors, glasses for motorbikes and scooters and the corresponding accessories. The choice is enormous, because every motorcyclist, scooter, scooter rider and cyclist has his or her own head, and there is no accounting for taste. We therefore have an extensive range of jet helmets, jet helmets with visors, full-face helmets, flip-up/modular helmets, half-shell helmets and children's helmets. Plus lots of accessories like goggles, visors, sun visors and even bike helmets. You can try on and test ride all our helmets in our shop in Landsberg! You can find an overview of our helmet range and other useful information in our webshop in the Helmets & Visors section.

Video Tutorial: which helmet suits me?

In our SIP TV video here, we explain which helmet types there are and how to find the perfect motorbike helmet for you. If you liked the video, please leave a like and subscribe to our SIP TV Channel on YouTube.

Ralf Jodl
Ralf Jodl

Ralf is managing director and co-founder of SIP Scootershop. He has been riding Vespa since 1990 and even today the working day starts best for him when he rides to the SIP headquarters in Landsberg on his Rally 200. Otherwise he owns a 180 SS, a 160 GS and a VM2 fenderlight Vespa.